- Wide design suitable to wear during the day
- Adjustable snaps
In rural Indonesia, 17 percent of 512 surveyed students missed at least 1 day in the last period due to difficulties related to menstrual health management (Burnet Institute, 2015). Twenty-eight percent of students who linked their absence to menstrual management said their use, beliefs, and access to menstrual products was the main cause.
To solve this challenge, Annabel Buzink for SIMAVI (2015) suggested in her research that developing sanitary pads that are easy to use, inexpensive, recyclable and made from environmentally friendly materials would improve the girls’ experience.
One widely discussed topic in international development is cost-effective interventions to increase school participation. Kopernik is interested in exploring one such intervention by testing the impact of reusable menstrual pads on girls’ school attendance in East Sumba, one of our last mile project areas. For users of rags or other traditional menstrual products, reusable menstrual pads are more reliable, comfortable, and easier to clean and maintain. For users of disposable pads, reusable pads cut costs incurred each menstrual cycle. It does not, however, increase productivity because of the time it takes for the user to clean and maintain the pads. Taking into account this displacement of the status quo product, we want to see if our research participants benefit from having access to reusable pads, in terms of cost, waste management, productivity, and menstrual health.
Kopernik will conduct randomised research on 80 female students in a public middle school, SMPN Satu Atap Padadita Middle School in Kambera subdistrict of East Sumba, Indonesia.
The female students will be divided fairly into two groups: a treatment and a control group. Participants in the treatment group will receive the reusable menstrual pads in the beginning of the experiment, and the control group will receive it at the end. During the experiment, participants will fill in a menstrual diary with research-relevant information.
At the end of the experiment, Kopernik will share and discuss the results in a reproductive health workshop, along with useful information regarding menstrual health management. Kopernik will also publish and share the results in a project report.
Kopernik’s Monitoring and Evaluation team will record data including:
- Self-reported school attendance;
- Reason for absence;
- Menstrual period days;
- Products used; and
- Health symptoms.
The results will be compared between the treatment and control groups. In addition, we will obtain several more indicators regarding personal habits, beliefs, and menstrual product use and disposal in the baseline and end line surveys conducted with guidance in the classroom, as well as school-recorded attendance.
If access to reusable pads has indeed had a significant socioeconomic impact on our research participants, Kopernik will consider providing access to affordable, high-quality reusable pads for women in our project areas in East Nusa Tenggara and West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia.
We are helping middle school female students in East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia, who lack access to reproductive health education and reusable menstrual hygiene pads. This project is part of Kopernik’s experimental projects, a series of small-scale, low-investment tests of simple ideas with the potential to reduce poverty.
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Cost of technology, including shipping/building expenses
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Monitoring and Evaluation
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